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August 2010 Top Stories


NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 1 August 2010 (early edition) »» NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 1 August 2010 (early edition)

[Sunday, August 1, 2010] Last night (at 7:48pm EDT) RPC1 (Remote Power Controller 1) in RPCM (RPC Module) S11A_D tripped open, powering off the Loop A ammonia pump of the S1 ETCS (External Thermal Control System), resulting in the loss of one half of the cooling to ISS.

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International Space Station in Stable Configuration After Loss of Cooling Loop »» International Space Station in Stable Configuration After Loss of Cooling Loop

[Sunday, August 1, 2010] The station is in a stable configuration with most systems receiving cooling and many systems operating with redundancy following the installation of jumper cables from the Destiny Lab's power system overnight.

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N. Wayne Hale, Jr. Joins Special Aerospace Services »» N. Wayne Hale, Jr. Joins Special Aerospace Services

[Monday, August 2, 2010] Special Aerospace Services (SAS) of Boulder, Colorado, is pleased to announce that N. Wayne Hale, Jr. has joined SAS as Director of Human Spaceflight Programs.

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Centenarians Participate in Challenger Learning Center Mission »» Centenarians Participate in Challenger Learning Center Mission

[Monday, August 2, 2010] If you have ever seen a photo of someone participating in a simulated space mission at a Challenger Learning Center, odds are it is someone around 10 years old. Recently a group of women pushed that participant envelope to new heights.

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NASA Reveals Key to Unlock Mysterious Red Glow in Space »» NASA Reveals Key to Unlock Mysterious Red Glow in Space

[Monday, August 2, 2010] NASA scientists created a unique collection of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) spectra to interpret mysterious emission from space.

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NASA Casts A Wide Net For Summer Of Innovation Partners »» NASA Casts A Wide Net For Summer Of Innovation Partners

[Monday, August 2, 2010] NASA is inviting potential partners to participate in the agency's Summer of Innovation project to engage middle school students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning activities.

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Report: Fairness and Contracting Integrity in NASA's Space Communications Networks Services Competition »» Report: Fairness and Contracting Integrity in NASA's Space Communications Networks Services Competition

[Monday, August 2, 2010] Committee staff received several allegations about contract misconduct by the management and acquisitions staff of the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). These all related to large support contracts managed out of the Center.

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NASA Hosts Workshop to Discuss Exploring Near Earth Objects »» NASA Hosts Workshop to Discuss Exploring Near Earth Objects

[Monday, August 2, 2010] NASA will host an interactive workshop to identify objectives for exploration missions to near-Earth objects, or NEOs, on Aug. 10-11 at the Renaissance Mayflower Hotel in Washington.

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Eye Of The Storm: Langley Researchers Take Part In Huge Hurricane Campaign »» Eye Of The Storm: Langley Researchers Take Part In Huge Hurricane Campaign

[Monday, August 2, 2010] As Virginians prepare for the heart of hurricane season, a team of NASA Langley Research Center scientists and engineers are preparing to take part in one of the agency's largest hurricane research efforts ever.

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NASA and ESA's First Joint Mission to Mars Selects Instruments »» NASA and ESA's First Joint Mission to Mars Selects Instruments

[Monday, August 2, 2010] NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) have embarked on a joint program to explore Mars in the coming decades and selected the five science instruments for the first mission.

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Aurora Alert - The Sun Is Waking Up! »» Aurora Alert - The Sun Is Waking Up!

[Monday, August 2, 2010] Sky viewers might get to enjoy some spectacular Northern Lights, or aurorae, tomorrow. After a long slumber, the Sun is waking up.

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Astrium signs development contract with Vietnam for an Earth observation satellite - VNREDSat-1 »» Astrium signs development contract with Vietnam for an Earth observation satellite - VNREDSat-1

[Monday, August 2, 2010] Astrium has signed a contract worth 055.2 million with the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) for the development, manufacture and launch of an Earth observation optical satellite system.

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International Space Station Repair Spacewalk Planned for Friday »» International Space Station Repair Spacewalk Planned for Friday

[Tuesday, August 3, 2010] NASA has decided to wait until Friday to conduct a spacewalk to replace a failed ammonia pump module on the International Space Station.

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Message to NASA Civil Service and Contractor Employees: Social Networking Tools and Web 2.0 - Appropriate Use of Web Technologies »» Message to NASA Civil Service and Contractor Employees: Social Networking Tools and Web 2.0 - Appropriate Use of Web Technologies

[Tuesday, August 3, 2010] The purpose of this memorandum is to provide guidance to NASA civil service and contractor employees regarding the use of these Web technologies to facilitate collaboration and information sharing within NASA.

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NASA Kepler Science Status: Statement to Ames Center Director »» NASA Kepler Science Status: Statement to Ames Center Director

[Tuesday, August 3, 2010] The following NASA statement was sent to Dr. S. Pete Worden, Director, NASA Ames Research Center from the Kepler Science Council on Aug. 2, 2010.

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Seeing a Stellar Explosion in 3D »» Seeing a Stellar Explosion in 3D

[Wednesday, August 4, 2010] Astronomers using ESO's Very Large Telescope have for the first time obtained a three-dimensional view of the distribution of the innermost material expelled by a recently exploded star.

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NASA Desert RATS 2010: Challenger Center Hardware Arrives at JSC »» NASA Desert RATS 2010: Challenger Center Hardware Arrives at JSC

[Wednesday, August 4, 2010] As was the case in 2009, Green Trail Energy has partnered with the Challenger Center for Space Science Education to provide logistical and technical support for Education and Public Outreach to be done at NASA's annual Desert RATS activity.

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NASA Moves Space Station Repair Spacewalk To Saturday »» NASA Moves Space Station Repair Spacewalk To Saturday

[Thursday, August 5, 2010] he first of two spacewalks by NASA astronauts to replace a failed ammonia pump on the International Space Station has been moved to Saturday, Aug. 7. A second spacewalk is planned for Wednesday, Aug. 11, to complete the repairs.

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A Galactic Spectacle: Antennae Galaxies »» A Galactic Spectacle: Antennae Galaxies

[Thursday, August 5, 2010] A beautiful new image of two colliding galaxies has been released by NASA's Great Observatories. The Antennae galaxies are shown in this composite image from the Chandra, Hubble, and Spitzer Space Telescopes.

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What is the Space Shuttle's True Legacy? »» What is the Space Shuttle's True Legacy?

[Thursday, August 5, 2010] As the final flights of the Space Shuttle draw near, already some of us are awash in nostalgia for the winged beast, not withstanding its ruinous cost.

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NASA Seeks Data from Innovative Lunar Demonstrations »» NASA Seeks Data from Innovative Lunar Demonstrations

[Saturday, August 7, 2010] NASA has issued a BAA to purchase specific data resulting from industry efforts to test and verify vehicle capabilities through demonstrations of small robotic landers. The purpose is to inform the development of future human and robotic lander vehicles.

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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 6 August 2010 »» NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 6 August 2010

[Saturday, August 7, 2010] US EVA-15 by EV1 Doug Wheelock & EV2 Tracy Caldwell-Dyson was terminated without Loop A PM (Pump Module) removal because of a leak at one (M3) of the four QDs (Quick Disconnects) connecting the ammonia lines.

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Mini-RF Has Just Completed its First Month of Polar Mapping »» Mini-RF Has Just Completed its First Month of Polar Mapping

[Sunday, August 8, 2010] The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's Mini-RF has just completed its first month of systematic polar mapping.

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Space Station EVA Unable To Remove Failed Ammonia Pump - More EVAs Ahead »» Space Station EVA Unable To Remove Failed Ammonia Pump - More EVAs Ahead

[Sunday, August 8, 2010] The next spacewalk to complete the removal of a failed ammonia pump module and installation and activation of a new pump module on the International Space Station's S1 Truss will take place no earlier than Wednesday.

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Greenland Glacier Gives Birth to Giant Iceberg »» Greenland Glacier Gives Birth to Giant Iceberg

[Monday, August 9, 2010] Envisat has been observing a rare event in the Arctic since early August - a giant iceberg breaking off the Petermann glacier in North-West Greenland.

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AbGradCon 2010 a Success »» AbGradCon 2010 a Success

[Monday, August 9, 2010] The 2010 Astrobiology Graduate Student Conference was held from June 14-18 in Taellberg, Sweden. Eighty-eight participants from 29 different countries attended the meeting, which brought together early-career scientists in the field of astrobiology.

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NASA Synopsis: Rehabilitation of Hangar One at NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field CA »» NASA Synopsis: Rehabilitation of Hangar One at NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field CA

[Monday, August 9, 2010] NASA Ames Research Center is planning for the rehabilitation of Hangar One, a historic property located at Moffett Field, California. The hangar is currently undergoing environmental clean up to remove hazardous materials.

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NASA Announces Next Opportunity for Cubesat Space Missions »» NASA Announces Next Opportunity for Cubesat Space Missions

[Monday, August 9, 2010] NASA has announced a second opportunity for small satellite payloads to fly on rockets planned to launch in 2011 and 2012. These CubeSats could be auxiliary cargo on previously planned missions.

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NASA'S First It Summit To Showcase Public And Private Tech Innovations »» NASA'S First It Summit To Showcase Public And Private Tech Innovations

[Tuesday, August 10, 2010] NASA is inviting journalists to cover its first Information Technology (IT) Summit on Aug. 16-18.

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Sean O'Keefe and His Son Survive Plane Crash »» Sean O'Keefe and His Son Survive Plane Crash

[Tuesday, August 10, 2010] According to a family source both Sean O'Keefe and his son Kevin survived the plane crash but they are both rather banged up.

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Robonaut Packed for Space »» Robonaut Packed for Space

[Tuesday, August 10, 2010] Cocooned inside an aluminum frame and foam blocks cut out to its shape, Robonaut 2, or R2, is heading to the International Space Station inside the Permanent Multipurpose Module in space shuttle Discovery's payload bay as part of the STS-133 mission.

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NASA Announces Tweetup For Next Space Shuttle Launch »» NASA Announces Tweetup For Next Space Shuttle Launch

[Tuesday, August 10, 2010] NASA will give 150 of its Twitter followers an insider's look at the nation's space program and the opportunity to view a space shuttle launch in person.

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Wednesday Space Station EVA »» Wednesday Space Station EVA

[Wednesday, August 11, 2010] NASA managers decided to begin Wednesday's spacewalk one hour later than originally planned. NASA TV coverage now will begin at 7 a.m., and the crew is scheduled to switch to battery power at 7:55 a.m.

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NASA and Israel Space Agency Sign Statement of Intent for Future Cooperation »» NASA and Israel Space Agency Sign Statement of Intent for Future Cooperation

[Wednesday, August 11, 2010] During a meeting Tuesday at NASA Headquarters in Washington, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and Israel Space Agency Director General Zvi Kaplan signed a joint statement of intent to expand the agencies' cooperation in civil space activities.

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Arctic rocks offer new glimpse of primitive Earth »» Arctic rocks offer new glimpse of primitive Earth

[Wednesday, August 11, 2010] The newly identified mantle "reservoir," as it is called, dates from just a few tens of million years after the Earth was first assembled from the collisions of smaller bodies.

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Ambitious Survey Spots Stellar Nurseries »» Ambitious Survey Spots Stellar Nurseries

[Wednesday, August 11, 2010] Astronomers scanning the skies as part of ESO's VISTA Magellanic Cloud survey have now obtained a spectacular picture of the Tarantula Nebula in our neighboring galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud.

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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 11 August 2010 »» NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 11 August 2010

[Wednesday, August 11, 2010] Stage EVA-16 by FE-4 Douglas Wheelock & FE-2 Tracy Caldwell-Dyson was completed successfully in 7hr 26min, fully accomplishing its objective of removing the failed ETCS (External Thermal Control System) Loop A PM (Pump Module).

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Hubble Space Telescope Image: NGC 4696: A Cosmic Question Mark »» Hubble Space Telescope Image: NGC 4696: A Cosmic Question Mark

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] Curling around itself like a question mark, the unusual looking galaxy NGC 4696 itself begs many questions. Why is it such a strange shape? What are the odd, capillary-like filaments that stretch out of it?

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NASA Education Stakeholders' Summit »» NASA Education Stakeholders' Summit

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] NASA's Offices of Education, Human Capital and Management, Diversity and Equal Opportunity, and Communications invite the higher education community to attend the NASA Education Stakeholders' Summit.

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Discovery of First Trojan Asteroid in a Stable Zone Near Neptune »» Discovery of First Trojan Asteroid in a Stable Zone Near Neptune

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] Astronomers have discovered the first Trojan asteroid, 2008 LC18, at a difficult-to-detect stable spot near Neptune, the so-called Lagrangian point L5

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NASA Scientists to Share Ideas at SETIcon Gathering »» NASA Scientists to Share Ideas at SETIcon Gathering

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] NASA scientists will join space experts, celebrities and science fiction writers to discuss science, entertainment and celebrate the 25th anniversary of the SETI Institute, Mountain View, Calif., at the SETIcon, Aug. 13-15, 2010.

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Mountain Growth on Saturn's Moon Titan »» Mountain Growth on Saturn's Moon Titan

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] Saturn's moon Titan ripples with mountains, and scientists have been trying to figure out how they form. The best explanation, it turns out, is that Titan is shrinking as it cools, wrinkling up the moon's surface like a raisin.

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Hunting Tigers on Enceladus with Night Vision »» Hunting Tigers on Enceladus with Night Vision

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] Cassini will be hunting for heat signatures at the "tiger stripes" in the dim south polar region of Saturn's moon Enceladus on Aug. 13. The closest approach will bring the spacecraft to within about 2,500 km (1,600 mi) of the surface of Enceladus.

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Fermi Detects 'Shocking' Surprise from Supernova's Little Cousin »» Fermi Detects 'Shocking' Surprise from Supernova's Little Cousin

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] Astronomers using NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope have detected gamma-rays from a nova for the first time, a finding that stunned observers and theorists alike.

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Citizen Scientists Discover Rotating Pulsar »» Citizen Scientists Discover Rotating Pulsar

[Thursday, August 12, 2010] This is the first genuine astronomical discovery by a public volunteer distributed computing project. The details of their discovery and the process of getting there are revealed in a paper published in the Aug. 12 edition of Science Express.

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NRC Decadal Survey: New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics »» NRC Decadal Survey: New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics

[Friday, August 13, 2010] New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics proposes enhancing innovative but moderate-cost programs in space and on the ground that will enable the community to respond rapidly and flexibly to new scientific discoveries.

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Robonaut 2 One of the Highlights of NASA's STS-133 Payload Event »» Robonaut 2 One of the Highlights of NASA's STS-133 Payload Event

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] Yesterday NASA held an event at Kennedy Space Center to showcase some of the flight hardware that will travel to the International Space Station onboard Space Shuttle Discovery. This included the so-called 7th crew member of the mission - Robonaut 2.

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Now calling passengers for the Moon and Mars »» Now calling passengers for the Moon and Mars

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] You can do a lot in 25 seconds! Like simulating weightlessness, lunar gravity or martian surface operations aboard an A300 Zero-G aircraft flying on a special trajectory. ESA is now calling for scientists to come along.

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Photo of Earth from Space: Electric Blue Blooms Around Ireland »» Photo of Earth from Space: Electric Blue Blooms Around Ireland

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] Resembling the brush strokes of French Impressionist Claude Monet, electric blue-coloured plankton blooms swirl in the North Atlantic Ocean off Ireland in this Envisat image.

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ESA Astronaut Candidates Train in Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory Pool »» ESA Astronaut Candidates Train in Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory Pool

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] This summer, ESA's astronaut candidates have been splashing about at the pool - but not just for fun. They've been involved in 'extravehicular activity (EVA) pre-familiarisation', a vital part of astronaut training.

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Extended Solar Minimum Linked to Changes in Sun's Conveyor Belt »» Extended Solar Minimum Linked to Changes in Sun's Conveyor Belt

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] A new analysis of the unusually long solar cycle that ended in 2008 suggests that one reason for the long cycle could be a stretching of the Sun's conveyor belt, a current of plasma that circulates between the Sun's equator and its poles.

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Looking for the Coolest Forms of Life on Earth »» Looking for the Coolest Forms of Life on Earth

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] Two UK scientists are travelling to one of the coldest places on Earth to help them understand how life could exist on other planets in our Solar System.

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The eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Competition »» The eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Competition

[Saturday, August 14, 2010] The challenge is for a senior- and graduate-level design course in which students will design, manufacture, assemble and test an inflatable loft that will be integrated onto an existing NASA-built operational hard-shell prototype.

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Are you ready for the Red Planet? Book Review: Mary Roach's »» Are you ready for the Red Planet? Book Review: Mary Roach's "Packing for Mars"

[Sunday, August 15, 2010] For most of us spacers human spaceflight is nothing to, well, joke about. After all, riding rockets into the cosmos is serious business, and there's nothing that NASA or we do better than take ourselves seriously - perhaps too seriously.

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IBEX Shows How Magnetosphere Protects Earth from Solar Wind »» IBEX Shows How Magnetosphere Protects Earth from Solar Wind

[Monday, August 16, 2010] It has long been known that the Earth's magnetic field provides a protective barrier for life on Earth. As energetic particles stream outward from the Sun in the form of the solar wind, they are deflected by a "force field" created by the Earth's magnetos

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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 August 2010 »» NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 August 2010

[Tuesday, August 17, 2010] Stage EVA-17 by Doug Wheelock & Tracy Caldwell-Dyson was completed successfully in 7hr 20min, fully accomplishing its objective of installing the spare ETCS (External Thermal Control System) Loop A PM (Pump Module) plus additional tasks.

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NASA, Mavericks Launch Study of Earth's Atmosphere »» NASA, Mavericks Launch Study of Earth's Atmosphere

[Tuesday, August 17, 2010] NASA's Ames Research Center and Mavericks Civilian Space Foundation, Moffett Field, Calif., today announced a collaboration to develop a high-altitude high-velocity air sampling system for NASA biological experiments.

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Successful Launch of First AEHF Satellite »» Successful Launch of First AEHF Satellite

[Tuesday, August 17, 2010] The U.S. Air Force launched the first of the Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellites (AEHF-1) aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket, Saturday, Aug. 14 at 7:07 a.m. EDT.

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NASA to Hold Media Briefing on Latest Results from Lunar Mission »» NASA to Hold Media Briefing on Latest Results from Lunar Mission

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] NASA will host a media teleconference at 2p.m. EDT on Thursday, August 19 to discuss new research results from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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NASA And Mary J. Blige Encourage Science Careers For Women »» NASA And Mary J. Blige Encourage Science Careers For Women

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] NASA is collaborating with award-winning recording artist Mary J. Blige to encourage young women to pursue exciting experiences and career choices by studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

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NASA Seeks Innovative Ideas About Human Health Challenges »» NASA Seeks Innovative Ideas About Human Health Challenges

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] LAUNCH forums focus on key areas, including water, air, food, and energy. They provide a venue for evaluating creative ideas among peers and collaborative, solution-driven discussions.

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Aerospace and Defense Companies Hiring, But Face Challenges Retaining Young Pros »» Aerospace and Defense Companies Hiring, But Face Challenges Retaining Young Pros

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] AVIATION WEEK has released results from its 2010 Workforce and Young Professionals/Student Study, which show that A&D companies plan to hire 15,500 professionals this year.

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NASA Announces 2010 Global Climate Change Education Awards »» NASA Announces 2010 Global Climate Change Education Awards

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] NASA has awarded $7.7 million in cooperative agreements to 17 organizations across the United States to enhance learning through the use of NASA's Earth science resources.

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Space Coast Task Force Delivers Economic Strategies Report »» Space Coast Task Force Delivers Economic Strategies Report

[Wednesday, August 18, 2010] The President's Task Force on Space Industry Workforce and Economic Development today released its report to President Barack Obama with recommendations to enhance economic development strategies along Florida's Space Coast.

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Space Station Cooling Loop Reactivated »» Space Station Cooling Loop Reactivated

[Thursday, August 19, 2010] The Expedition 24 crew had another light-duty day Wednesday as the Loop A cooling system reactivation continued aboard the International Space Station.

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Geologists revisit the Great Oxygenation Event »» Geologists revisit the Great Oxygenation Event

[Thursday, August 19, 2010] Four billion years ago the earth's atmosphere was a deadly mixture of gases spewed forth by volcanoes, such as nitrogen and its oxides, carbon dioxide, methane, ammonia, sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide.

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NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Reveals 'Incredible Shrinking Moon' »» NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Reveals 'Incredible Shrinking Moon'

[Thursday, August 19, 2010] Newly discovered cliffs in the lunar crust indicate the moon shrank globally in the geologically recent past and might still be shrinking today.

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Cosmic Lens Used to Probe Dark Energy for First Time »» Cosmic Lens Used to Probe Dark Energy for First Time

[Thursday, August 19, 2010] Astronomers have devised a new method for measuring perhaps the greatest puzzle of our universe -- dark energy. This mysterious force, discovered in 1998, is pushing our universe apart at ever-increasing speeds.

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Drought Drives Decade-Long Decline in Plant Growth »» Drought Drives Decade-Long Decline in Plant Growth

[Thursday, August 19, 2010] Global plant productivity that once was on the rise with warming temperatures and a lengthened growing season is now on the decline because of regional drought according to a new study of NASA satellite data.

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Eclipsing Pulsar Promises Clues to Crushed Matter »» Eclipsing Pulsar Promises Clues to Crushed Matter

[Friday, August 20, 2010] Astronomers using NASA's Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) have found the first fast X-ray pulsar to be eclipsed by its companion star.

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Astronaut Muscles Waste in Space »» Astronaut Muscles Waste in Space

[Friday, August 20, 2010] Astronaut muscles waste away on long space flights reducing their capacity for physical work by more than 40%, according to research published online in the Journal of Physiology.

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How Much Mass Makes a Black Hole? »» How Much Mass Makes a Black Hole?

[Friday, August 20, 2010] Using ESO's Very Large Telescope, European astronomers have for the first time demonstrated that a magnetar -- an unusual type of neutron star -- was formed from a star with at least 40 times as much mass as the Sun.

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Hidden Star Power Revealed in Ancient Galaxy Cluster »» Hidden Star Power Revealed in Ancient Galaxy Cluster

[Friday, August 20, 2010] Much like quiet, middle-aged baby boomers peacefully residing in some of the world's largest cities, families of some galaxies also have a hidden wild youth that they only now are revealing for the first time.

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Earth and Moon from 114 Million Miles as seen by MESSENGER »» Earth and Moon from 114 Million Miles as seen by MESSENGER

[Friday, August 20, 2010] In the lower left portion of this image, the Earth can be seen, as well as the much smaller Moon to Earth's right. When MESSENGER took this image, a distance of 183 million kilometers (114 million miles) separated the spacecraft and Earth.

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NASA Asks Public For FInal Shuttle Missions' Wakeup Songs »» NASA Asks Public For FInal Shuttle Missions' Wakeup Songs

[Friday, August 20, 2010] If you like music, the space program and are a little nostalgic, NASA has the perfect opportunity for you. For the first time, the public can help choose songs to wake up the astronauts during the last two scheduled space shuttle missions.

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NASA Supports New FAA Commerical Space Transportation Center »» NASA Supports New FAA Commerical Space Transportation Center

[Friday, August 20, 2010] NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida will support the new Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation (COE), a university-led consortium sponsored and announced Wednesday by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

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SpaceX Conducts Dragon Parachute Test (Photos and Video) »» SpaceX Conducts Dragon Parachute Test (Photos and Video)

[Friday, August 20, 2010] The purpose of the test was to validate the Dragon's parachute deployment systems and recovery operations prior to the first flight of an operational Dragon later this year.

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FAA Creates Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation »» FAA Creates Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation

[Saturday, August 21, 2010] The FAA has selected New Mexico State University (NMSU), Las Cruces, NM, to lead a new Air Transportation Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation which includes Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.

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NASA's Pioneer Orion Capsule Starts Its Test Phase »» NASA's Pioneer Orion Capsule Starts Its Test Phase

[Monday, August 23, 2010] The crucial pressure testing phase for NASA's pioneer Orion crew test capsule has begun inside the NASA Michoud Assembly Facility (MAF) in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Self-cleaning technology from Mars can keep terrestrial solar panels dust free »» Self-cleaning technology from Mars can keep terrestrial solar panels dust free

[Monday, August 23, 2010] Find dusting those tables and dressers a chore or a bore? Dread washing the windows? Imagine keeping dust and grime off objects spread out over an area of 25 to 50 football fields

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Ancient microbes responsible for breathing life into ocean 'deserts' »» Ancient microbes responsible for breathing life into ocean 'deserts'

[Monday, August 23, 2010] Billions of years ago, ancient oceanic microbes catalyzed the transformation from an oxygen-poor atmosphere to an oxygen-rich one, paving the way for complex life to develop.

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Pulverized Planet Dust May Lie Around Double Stars »» Pulverized Planet Dust May Lie Around Double Stars

[Monday, August 23, 2010] Tight double-star systems might not be the best places for life to spring up, according to a new study using data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

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NASA To Announce Latest Findings By Kepler Spacecraft »» NASA To Announce Latest Findings By Kepler Spacecraft

[Monday, August 23, 2010] NASA will hold a media teleconference Thursday, Aug. 26, at 1 p.m. EDT to discuss the Kepler spacecraft's latest discovery about an intriguing planetary system.

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Mars Rover Spirit Update: 'Sweep & Beep' Campaign Continues »» Mars Rover Spirit Update: 'Sweep & Beep' Campaign Continues

[Monday, August 23, 2010] Spirit remains silent at her location called "Troy" on the west side of Home Plate. No communication has been received from the rover since Sol 2210 (March 22, 2010).

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Mars Rover Opportunity Update: Opportunity Keeps on Driving to Endeavour Crater »» Mars Rover Opportunity Update: Opportunity Keeps on Driving to Endeavour Crater

[Monday, August 23, 2010] Opportunity again drove five times in the past week, adding more to the total rover odometry as she makes her way to Endeavour crater.

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Life and Physical Sciences Research for a New Era of Space Exploration: An Interim Report »» Life and Physical Sciences Research for a New Era of Space Exploration: An Interim Report

[Tuesday, August 24, 2010] In response to requests from Congress, NASA asked the National Research Council to undertake a decadal survey of life and physical sciences in microgravity.

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Richest Planetary System Discovered - Up to 7 Planets Orbiting a Sun-like Star »» Richest Planetary System Discovered - Up to 7 Planets Orbiting a Sun-like Star

[Tuesday, August 24, 2010] Astronomers using ESO's world-leading HARPS instrument have discovered a planetary system containing at least five planets, orbiting the Sun-like star HD 10180.

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Caterpillar Inc. Joins Sponsors of First Lunar Expedition by Astrobotic Technology »» Caterpillar Inc. Joins Sponsors of First Lunar Expedition by Astrobotic Technology

[Tuesday, August 24, 2010] The initial Astrobotic mission will revisit the Apollo 11 site in April 2013 with a five-foot tall, 160-lb. robot broadcasting 3D high-definition video. The mission will carry payloads to the Moon and convey the experience to the world via Internet video

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'Avatar' Director and NASA Focus on Earth Science Exploration in PSA Campaign »» 'Avatar' Director and NASA Focus on Earth Science Exploration in PSA Campaign

[Tuesday, August 24, 2010] James Cameron, director of "Avatar", is featured in a series of new NASA public service announcements that describe the many contributions of the agency's Earth science program to environmental awareness and exploration of our home planet.

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What Lift-off: Should Congress Design the Next Big Booster? »» What Lift-off: Should Congress Design the Next Big Booster?

[Wednesday, August 25, 2010] Consider how many space initiatives the United States didn't pursue in the past half century. ...

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First Successful Corona Remote Sensing Satellite Built by Lockheed Martin Marks 50 Year Anniversary »» First Successful Corona Remote Sensing Satellite Built by Lockheed Martin Marks 50 Year Anniversary

[Wednesday, August 25, 2010] Lockheed Martin today congratulated the NRO and NGA on the 50-year anniversary of the first Corona photo reconnaissance satellite image from space, which ushered in new space-based capabilities for the nation.

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NASA/NOAA Study Finds El Ninos are Growing Stronger »» NASA/NOAA Study Finds El Ninos are Growing Stronger

[Wednesday, August 25, 2010] A relatively new type of El Nino, which has its warmest waters in the central- equatorial Pacific Ocean, rather than in the eastern-equatorial Pacific, is becoming more common and progressively stronger, according to a new study by NASA and NOAA.

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Desert RATS 2010 Live Webcast Event on Sept. 1, 2010 »» Desert RATS 2010 Live Webcast Event on Sept. 1, 2010

[Wednesday, August 25, 2010] NASA's Desert RATS, or Research and Technology Studies, will make its 13th trip to the desert this fall for another round of analog testing.

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Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee Teleconference 17 Sep 2010 »» Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee Teleconference 17 Sep 2010

[Wednesday, August 25, 2010] The proposed agenda for this teleconference is to continue the group's review of the Concept of Operation for Global Space Vehicle Debris Threat Management report.

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Star Challengers Book »» Star Challengers Book "Moon Base Crisis" Debuts at Downey Challenger Learning Center

[Thursday, August 26, 2010] Challenger Center for Space Science Education Center's Founder, June Scobee Rodgers, will be available for interviews and will sign copies of "Moon Base Crisis" the first in a new series of Star Challengers science fiction adventures for young readers.

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NASA's Kepler Mission Discovers Two Planets Transiting the Same Star »» NASA's Kepler Mission Discovers Two Planets Transiting the Same Star

[Thursday, August 26, 2010] NASA's Kepler spacecraft has discovered the first confirmed planetary system with more than one planet crossing in front of, or transiting, the same star.

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Amazing New Sun Images from NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory »» Amazing New Sun Images from NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory

[Thursday, August 26, 2010] NJIT Distinguished Professor Philip R. Goode and the Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) team have achieved "first light" using a deformable mirror in what is called adaptive opticsat Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO).

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How Asteroids Split Up -- Mystery of asteroid pairs solved »» How Asteroids Split Up -- Mystery of asteroid pairs solved

[Friday, August 27, 2010] Small irregularly-shaped asteroids can be "spun up" to fast rotation rates by sunlight falling on them -- much as the asymmetric profile of a propeller blade helps it to spin up in the wind.

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Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer arrives at launch site »» Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer arrives at launch site

[Friday, August 27, 2010] One of the most complex space scientific instruments ever built, the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02) arrived at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, escorted by astronauts who will fly with it on the Space Shuttle in February 2011.

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ISS Ship-tracker Operating Alongside Norwegian satellite »» ISS Ship-tracker Operating Alongside Norwegian satellite

[Friday, August 27, 2010] Nearing the end of its third month of continuous operation, the International Space Station's ship-tracking experiment has experienced a marked increase in data quality. Now it operates along with a dedicated satellite carrying the same receiver.

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NASA Announces High School Competition for Future Engineers »» NASA Announces High School Competition for Future Engineers

[Friday, August 27, 2010] NASA is challenging high school teams to design software to program small satellites aboard the International Space Station. The competition centers on the Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites, or SPHERES.

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Shrinking Atmospheric Layer Linked to Low Levels of Solar Radiation »» Shrinking Atmospheric Layer Linked to Low Levels of Solar Radiation

[Friday, August 27, 2010] Large changes in the sun's energy output may drive unexpectedly dramatic fluctuations in Earth's outer atmosphere.

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New Image of Mars's Mysterious Elongated Crater »» New Image of Mars's Mysterious Elongated Crater

[Friday, August 27, 2010] Orcus Patera is an enigmatic elliptical depression near Mars's equator, in the eastern hemisphere of the planet. Located between the volcanoes of Elysium Mons and Olympus Mons, its formation remains a mystery.

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NASA MSFC RFI: Electrodynamic Tether Propulsion Demonstration Mission »» NASA MSFC RFI: Electrodynamic Tether Propulsion Demonstration Mission

[Saturday, August 28, 2010] Responses to this RFI will provide information necessary for the selection of spacecraft providing partners for the proposal team in late Summer/early Fall 2010.

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Murals Commemorate Space Shuttle Legacy »» Murals Commemorate Space Shuttle Legacy

[Saturday, August 28, 2010] Huge murals of artwork commemorating three decades of historic explorations and scientific achievements by all five of America's Space Shuttle Orbiters now grace the Shuttle Firing Room inside the Launch Control Center at NASA KSC.

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NASTAR Center and Special Aerospace Services Commence Research Study on Emergency Detection and Human Response of Atlas V Profile »» NASTAR Center and Special Aerospace Services Commence Research Study on Emergency Detection and Human Response of Atlas V Profile

[Saturday, August 28, 2010] The NASTAR Center has completed the initial phase of a research effort focused on commercial human spaceflight and systems development related to emergency detection and response using an Atlas V flight profile.

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Summoning the Future By Remembering the Past »» Summoning the Future By Remembering the Past

[Monday, August 30, 2010] There is an old saying that those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat its mistakes. However, there is an extension of this in that those who do not remember history are doomed to not repeat what was successful either.

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NASA, Internet Archive and Flickr Launch Historic Image Collection »» NASA, Internet Archive and Flickr Launch Historic Image Collection

[Monday, August 30, 2010] Three compilations of images from more than half a century of NASA history are available for comment on a section of the photo-sharing site Flickr known as The Commons.

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India Announces Instrument Suite for Chandrayaan–2 Moon Orbiter, Lander and Rover »» India Announces Instrument Suite for Chandrayaan–2 Moon Orbiter, Lander and Rover

[Monday, August 30, 2010] The Indian Space Research Organization today announced the suite of instruments for its second mission to the moon after it's first orbiter Chandrayaan–1 was successful in its mission. The second mission is scheduled for 2013.

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